Lunchtime Webinar: Making collaborative online activities work

Our January webinar looked at how effective activity design and facilitation can encourage students to participate in collaborative online learning tasks. The webinar discussed use cases for collaborative work and the barriers to engagement, before moving on to consider the relationship of the online activity to the overarching learning outcomes, addressing the need for alignment between outcomes, task and tools. The webinar concluded with a summary of instructional responsibilities in support of collaborative learning activities.

The links to the webinar recording and slide deck are available here:

Case studies from the webinar

There are also a range of other case studies on our main case studies page, focusing on group work and collaboration, which have employed a wide range of tools from discussion forums to Google tools to support group work.


A useful starting point is to think about the targeted learning outcomes for a collaborative activity, and to consider the alignment between your outcomes and the design of the collaborative task and the choice of tools that will support the activity. Section 4.1 of the York TEL Handbook offers an introduction on how to define your learning objectives and to think about the design of a collaborative activity.

The York TEL Handbook also provides overview guidance on the various collaborative tools that may be used to support student learning, including tools to support the submission of work by groups through the use of the standard assignment tool, blog and Google docs.

Guidance on the instructional responsibilities in supporting students in the performance of collaborative online activities is also available in section 4 of the York TEL Handbook.

You may also find the dedicated guide that we have developed on supporting online communication and collaboration (pdf) helpful as a starting point in thinking about collaboration activities and tools, alongside a companion guide on e-moderation responsibilities (pdf).

One response to “Lunchtime Webinar: Making collaborative online activities work

  1. Pingback: E-Learning Newsletter – January 2017 Edition | E-Learning Development Team·

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